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Redwall (Redwall #1)

4.1  ·  Rating Details ·  77,191 Ratings  ·  2,720 Reviews
Redwall Abbey, tranquil home to a community of peace-loving mice is threatened by Cluny the Scourge - the evil-one-eyed rat warlord - and his battle-hardened horde of predators. Cluny is certain that Redwall will fall easily to his fearsome army but he hasn't bargained for the courage and strength of the combined forces of the Redwall mice and their loyal woodland friends. ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published September 4th 2006 by Red Fox (first published 1986)
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Liam ~I've got dreams that keep me up in the dead of night. Telling me I wasn't made for the simple life~ I would recommend this order:

1. Redwall
2. Mossflower
3. Martin the Warrior
4. Mattimeo
5. The Legend of Luke
6. Lord Brocktree

And from there you should…more
I would recommend this order:

1. Redwall
2. Mossflower
3. Martin the Warrior
4. Mattimeo
5. The Legend of Luke
6. Lord Brocktree

And from there you should read in chronological order. Not the publishing order, that's for sure.(less)
Michael A. I am 63, and started reading them in my 50's. I totally enjoyed every last one of the 22.
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The Best Epic Fantasy
2,707 books — 19,615 voters
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. RowlingThe Lightning Thief by Rick RiordanTwilight by Stephenie MeyerThe Giver by Lois LowryCity of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Best Young Adult Books
10,417 books — 71,320 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Aug 10, 2007 Erin rated it it was amazing
you know what was the best part of these books? and i say books as in plural because there were so fucking many of them i can't sit still long enough to check them all off. and i DID read every single one. what else was there to do in middle school?

anyway, the best part of these books was brian's description of food. it was magnificent. it didn't just make you hungry, it made you crave weird ass things that nobody would ever dream about eating in middle school. nutted cheeses and flan bread and
Apr 30, 2011 Stephen rated it it was ok

2.0 stars. Now I admit upfront that YA fantasy is somewhat starting to lose its appeal to me, making me a harsher critic of what I think are weak efforts. At the same time, I still really enjoy the compelling, higher end stuff. Unfortunately, THIS A'INT IT!! YA is one thing, but I found this to be the “Y” est of YA fantasy books that I have read in quite a while. It was just too young.

Despite the fact that the book is fairly well written and decently paced, I found the plot itself to just be c
Apr 22, 2010 Ryan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Now, for those of you who read this book and liked it, I have absolutely no problem with that. I actually thought it was an okay book myself. A heroic mouse by the name of Matthias lives peacefully in Redwall, an enclosed city within a fortress. The residents include mice, squirrels, badgers, otters, and all sorts of other small animals. However, an army of rats attack in envy of stealing the fortress. Matthias must become a warrior and obtain a sword to fight back at the army. Now, at this poin ...more
Jan 01, 2008 Ann rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of animal characters, fantasy adventure, or LOTR
I managed to finish this just in time for count it "as read" in 2007! With (how appropriate) 7 minutes to spare lol:>
I really enjoyed this book!!:D I was amazed at how vibrant the characters were and how attached to them I felt. Had I known the plot going into the book, I think I would have been very hesitant as the story centers around an attack from Cluny the Scourge (an evil rat) and his horde on the peaceful and caring Abby of Redwall mice and other woodland creatures - for 35
Zeke Gill
Jun 03, 2013 Zeke Gill rated it it was amazing
This was pretty much the book that got me hooked on reading because I used to hate it. I know, I know, Hate reading? how is that possible? The truth is, When you're eight or nine reading doesn't normally sound as good as watching a cartoon. But one glorious day I somehow stumbled across a cartoon of Redwall, and I LOVED it! I liked it so much that when the cartoon was over I had to know more about this amazing world, but I didn't have a way of watching the other movies so I was forced to do some ...more
Jan 11, 2013 Bookwraiths rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
As an adult, I found this book ok; it was the standard fantasy cliches that abound without anything especially new that caught my interest. However, since this was a bedtime story for my kids, I want to add that they enjoyed it more and would probably have said it was at least 3 stars if not 4.
Jul 01, 2007 Jesse rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like regular mice fighting with little swords
Ok, its regular sized animals living in a human sized world. Where are the humans? Why is there a human sized horse and wagon that the evil rats ride on? These are just some of the questions I pondered as I read through this snooze fest.

This book is quite literally a regular mouse picking up a tiny little sword, and fighting various things(snakes, rats, my will to live!). Now if the image of a little mouse holding a tiny sword doesn't want to make you retch at the absurd "oh how cute" nature of
Dec 30, 2014 Amber rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a pretty good read. When Redwall abbey is under attack by cluny the scourge and his horde of vicious rats, it is up to a young mouse named Mathias and the other woodland creatures to stop them. Will they succeed? Be sure to read this book and find out. I reccomend this book to fans of fantasy and ya books. Definitely check it out.
Feb 24, 2008 Rebecca rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: 5th grade and up
Recommended to Rebecca by: Chris W.
I read Chris's copy. He brought it to the library and said, "Read the real thing and not that other garbage." I guess that's a step up from "read this or die." I really have readers looking out for me, eh?

It took me a good while to get through this, but I'm glad I did. I've now read a classic and I can agree with Chris that one should read the "real thing" as well as the graphic novel adaptation. What the graphic novel missed in distilling down 300-plus pages was the descriptions: Jacques writes
Jul 01, 2008 Marya rated it it was ok
Shelves: children-fantasy
A distinctly children's book, with a simplified children's plot, simplified children's characters, and a simplified children's theme. If you focus on the plot and don't think the word "nuance", it can be quite enjoyable.

But alas, I am an adult, and I couldn't help trying to figure out the scale of the book in a literal sense. Are the mice supposed to be mice sized in a largely human world, a la Disney animated movies? Or are they supposed to be human sized in a world without humans a la furries
Jan 02, 2015 Brian rated it did not like it
I loved the Redwall series when I was young. When we'd go to visit my grandmother's house, I'd head to the library and grab a bit pile of books, and the Redwall books always featured among them. I read quite a few of them--up to Lord Brocktree, I think--before my interest waned, partially because the plots were all kind of blurring together, but also because I just moved on to other things. When my book group picked Redwall as the next book, I was eager to read it again, curious if it would hold ...more
Nov 21, 2016 Lata rated it liked it
I did not read this book (or its many following books) when I was younger, so thought it was time to give this book a go. Simple, straightforward story, with simply-drawn characters. The good guys (mice, squirrels, etc.) are really good people, while the bad guy is a whisker-twirling nasty fellow. The two main protagonists are as far apart in their actions and views as they could possibly be: Martin, the young, somewhat clumsy but respectful, hardworking and kind mouse. Cluny, the evil, lying, m ...more
Redwall was a book I read many years ago just before I entered into private schooling after going through six fun years of home schooling. Six years of being at home and getting an education does have the benefit of allowing an avid reader such as myself time to build up the reading speed and vocabulary (I did little else but read books in those formative years in fact but I digress). Now I must admit that I loved Redwall when I first read it as a ten year old. I thought it was the coolest thing ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
It’s the rare book that my sons have recommended to me...the rare book whose author I have actually met and heard speak and adored...the rare book that is on hundreds of Must-Read lists...the rare book that has all these things going for it and yet remains on my TBR heap.

I was finally motivated to pull it out of the pile and give it a thorough read when my 1001 Children’s Books list chose it for a group read in February.

Why, why, why, I thought as I finished the last page, why didn’t I read this
Jul 18, 2007 Tim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 10 year olds
After I finished this book my overall impression wasn't very good. But in retrospect I think that was mostly due to the fact that it's written for a ten-year-old audience. There's nothing wrong with the book when viewed as a kid's book. The writing is competent, and the story is exciting and interesting enough to keep a ten-year-old engaged. I imagine there are a lot of adults who are fans of this book, just like there are plenty of adult Harry Potter fans (though I didn't enjoy this one as much ...more
Book Concierge
Audiobook performed by a full cast, featuring Brian Jacques as the narrator.

From the author’s introductory note: When winter fades and spring blossoms into summer, I feel an overwhelming urge to travel back once more. Mouse Warriors and badger Lords come striding through the realms of my imagination, accompanied by their companions: comical hares, rustic moles, faithful otters, and all manner of diverse creatures. Questing, feasting, singing, and battling to defend good against evil.

My reactions
Mar 06, 2014 Bettie☯ rated it liked it
Recommended to Bettie☯ by: Wanda

When Redwall Abbey is attacked by a rat known as Cluny the Scourge, the Redwallers rise up in defense. A young mouse known as Matthias embarks on a quest to recover the legendary sword of Martin the Warrior for Redwall and his friends, because he believes that the sword is necessary in defeating Cluny's horde. (wiki source)

List of Redwall characters

Cluny the Scourge
Brother Methuselah
Constance the Badger
Jess Squirrel
Basil Stag Hare
Silent Sam
Dunwing Spar
Aug 30, 2009 Madeline rated it really liked it
I think I got to Book Three in this series when I was in elementary school, and I remember mostly liking these books when I wasn't giggling at the image of mice and chipmunks weilding tiny swords. But in all honesty, I'm only adding this review so I can post this xkcd comic I just stumbled across:
Mandie Peterson
Oct 06, 2016 Mandie Peterson rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of animal books, war books, and fantasy
Recommended to Mandie by: Katy Orsborn
Age: 10+
Plot: 4.5 stars
Characters: 3 stars
Writing: 4.5 stars
Overall: 5 stars
My Review: Who out there loves a good fantasy? I sure do. This is one of my favorites. The entire book, I was cheering for the residents of Redwall abbey, booing the villainous rats, and guessing how things might play out. Younger kids may enjoy the storyline itself, but, since there is a battle raging in the story, it was a little gory. Besides that, I couldn't recommend it more.
Similar Book: The Tale of Despereaux
Feb 05, 2015 Jason rated it it was amazing
This book Redwall is about a mouse named Matthias who is living in an abbey named Redwall. Then Cluny the Scourage comes along and ruins the peace as he declares war on the people (animals) of Redwall. Matthias finds himself looking for a sword of the great warrior Martin beliving that he can defeat Cluny and his horde. Matthias goes off with new hopes, finding allies and to save Redwall.

I can connect to text where in the book Comeback of the Home Run Kid by Matt Christopher a book I read a long
Kitvaria Sarene
Oct 04, 2015 Kitvaria Sarene rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This one is not easy for me to rate. If i could have, I would have gone with 3,5 stars. But since the 0,5 are completely due to my personal preferences I'll go with 4.

First of, I bought this on recommendation, without even a glance at the summary.
I was appropriately surprised when I found out the book was about mice and rats and some other small animals. They are completely humanized though - so it's not an "animal story" but one where humans are completely changed to small creatures. This is my
Feb 09, 2009 Jorge rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Brian Jacques' "Redwall" is one of the best books I have read. Its filled with mystery, adventure, songs, love, death, and the rise of a warior.
Redwall Abbey. The home of a mouse named Matthias and many other unique creatures. A place that was founded by Martin the Warior mouse. For many years, Redwall Abbey has been a place of peace. But that will soon change when a rat with evil intent reaches Mossflower Woods. That Cluny the Scourge. Cluny, an infamous rat with a whip-like tail, ha
Oct 18, 2016 leslye rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a whimsical fantasy for young readers- and the young at heart!

To describe the storyline sounds almost silly. Mice and other woodland creatures living in Redwall Abbey must protect themselves from the evil enemies (usually weasels and ferrets) who want to take their riches. The main character is Matthias, a brave young mouse who finds it his destiny to be a warrior and protect his home.

As I read this delightful tale, I was inspired by the quality of literature used in such a unique way. T
Oct 26, 2013 Michael rated it it was amazing
This was one of my very first childhood reads and I'm ashamed to say I'd forgotten all about this series until I was reminded about it within a Goodreads group (thank you, Goodreads!) I quickly went on to Amazon and bought the novel, eagerly awaiting its arrival.

I'm pleased to say it is still one of my favourite books and I'd wished I'd re-read it before embarking on writing my own novels because I think Brian Jacques is a master storyteller. His writing is the perfect blend of humour, grit and
Feb 03, 2009 Zoe rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens, fantasy
My 8 year old daughter loves this series, and in the interest of knowing what she's into (and on her recommendation) I read this. It is very well done, and I can see why Mr. Jacques has become such a phenomenon. The exploits of woodland creatures who live in a medieval abbey and the surrounding woods is of interest to all reading levels - these are great if your kid has finished Harry Potter or Narnia but isn't quite up to reading Tolkien yet.
Aug 01, 2015 Kiwi rated it liked it
Shelves: children-ya, fantasy
In this first book of the Redwall series, we follow Matthias’ adventure on his quest to find the lost sword of Martin the warrior. He and his friends will need to solve a number of riddles, deal with quarrelsome sparrows, handle a band of shrews and confront a powerful adder. All these feats in order to defend Redwall Abbey against Cluny the scourge army of rats.
A fun read full of brave and cute furry creatures. 3 stars
Mike (the Paladin)
Enjoyable books with animals as medieval type characters in a fantasy world. There isn't any overt fantasy as the world starts out (wizards etc) though some supernatural content is hinted at.

Nice books, found it (some of them) enjoyable. Was torn between 3 and 4 stars. Went with 3 as I never hurried to the later books and my children didn't get into these as they did some others. Maybe if I have grand children I'll reconsider, who knows?
 ☆☽ Ruth ☆☽
I can imagine that this book would make a fantastic animated film! It's a sweet story, full of old-fashioned charm and cute characters. Echoes of 'Watership Down' and 'Tales of the Riverbank' ensure that children from age 7-8 up will love it... although be aware there is battle action which includes some carnage and I imagine the snake scenes may be scary for little ones :).
I will certainly be on the lookout for the next book in the series.
Apr 25, 2016 Joel rated it really liked it
This book was actually *better* than I remember it being. It's got content that I would say is more targeted at mid-teens than preteens, which was how I'd remembered it. The writing is great, the story is entertaining, some of the action is ruthless, and the audio was terrific. It's going to be difficult to go back to reading adult things when I want to continue this series on an adult-reread.
Amelia, the pragmatic idealist
Anthropomorphic woodland creatures in a medieval setting? It must be the Redwall series, where the heroes are endearing everymen and the villains are flamboyant psychopaths! Before Harry Potter apparated onto the book scene, this series dominated my early adolescence.

It is still mind-boggling to me that some studio hasn't decided to do a big-budget, CGI/motion-capture adaptation.
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Brian Jacques (pronounced 'jakes') was born in Liverpool, England on June 15th, 1939. Along with forty percent of the population of Liverpool, his ancestral roots are in Ireland, County Cork to be exact.

Brian grew up in the area around the Liverpool docks, where he attended St. John's School, an inner city school featuring a playground on its roof. At the age of ten, his very first day at St. Joh
More about Brian Jacques...

Other Books in the Series

Redwall (1 - 10 of 22 books)
  • Mossflower (Redwall, #2)
  • Mattimeo (Redwall, #3)
  • Mariel of Redwall (Redwall, #4)
  • Salamandastron (Redwall, #5)
  • Martin the Warrior (Redwall, #6)
  • The Bellmaker (Redwall, #7)
  • Outcast of Redwall (Redwall, #8)
  • Pearls of Lutra (Redwall, #9)
  • The Long Patrol (Redwall, #10)
  • Marlfox (Redwall, #11)

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“Even the strongest and bravest must sometimes weep. It shows they have a great heart, one that can feel compassion for others.” 2933 likes
“Friar Hugo, old friend, brace yourself. I am the bearer of tragic news!"

Alarm spread across Hugo's pudgy features. "Tell me, Jess. What dreadful thing has happened?"

Jess spoke haltingly in a broken voice. "I fear that Cluny has tore up one of your oldest and most venerable dishrags. Alas, Redwall will never see it wipe another plate.”
More quotes…